At the end of last year, I sat down and tried to figure out what this blog was doing wrong. There was a fundamental problem that I saw, which was that we (TheCigarFeed) had fallen into the same routine that has dominated the medium: a simple review site. The site had failed to be a blog in the sense that I see the word to mean. After much debate, I’ve decided to introduce one feature that I hope will improve how the site functions in relation to the readers and the industry.
What is the eñd?
the eñd will be an editorial column that will feature strong and straight-forward opinions. Unlike everything else, I don’t have a set plan, except that at the maximum there will be two columns a month. My voice will be much more apparent, as it should given the issues discussed won’t be taste.
Inspiration comes from Elliott Wilson’s “You Played Yourself” column on RapRadar. (For those that don’t know, Mr. Wilson is probably the greatest Hip-Hop journalist with Editorial positions at print publications including Ego Trip, The Source, XXL and now Respect; a groundbreaking book he co-authored, that is still considered one of, if not the foremost, printed work on hip-hop; and one of the more influental voices to move from high-profile positions in print into the online world.) RapRadar uses the column with a bit of seriousness to serve as a voice of accountability and as a place to separate facts from strong opinions; and as a place to seek accountability in its industry.
the eñd will be published on Saturdays with no more than two a month and a strict limit of three-hundred words. The point is to attempt to function with some sense of accountability as media in regards to this industry, something that seems to be rare. It seems that the relationship between bloggers and the industry prevent them from being able to say negative things, and I say… let’s change that. The point of the eñd won’t be to select someone to mock or criticize and I hope that the larger intention is not lost.
This column will not be popular and inevitably it will upset someone. However, my hope is that individuals can look beyond the petty words and see many of the larger implications this column might have. I firmly believe that one of the foremost issues with bloggers in this industry and the infant stage of the medium is the larger relationship with the press and the industry, that is the notable absence of criticism. There have been a few who have authored columns that have been critical, and they have done it with a lot more experience. But that threshold seems irrelevant as long as the issues raised are legitimate and more than just an excuse for yours truly to gossip/complain.
I can’t say what the future holds for the column, in all honesty it could be the downfall of this rather young site, but I believe that a move away from rubber stamps will serve a larger purpose; in a little more than twelve hours, the eñd number one.